Pastor Corner by liaoqinmei


									West Farmington United Methodist Church
P.O. Box 93
West Farmington, Ohio 44491-0093
Phone: (330) 889-3345

          Newsletter Staff
     Pastor Jim George - 889-3345
      Dorothy Cleer – 889-2146
      Joyce List – 440-548-2618
    Carol Jean Goddard – 889-0022
    Georgene Svoboda – 889-2128                                  Adult Sunday School 9:30 a.m.
    Sharon Vandervort – 889-2481                                    Church Services 10:30 a.m.
November 2008                                                Children Sunday School 10:30 a.m.

  Our Hope: To reach out to all in Christ’s name.                                        THE COURIER
              NOTE FROM THE PASTOR                            with a goal of tithing. We need to encourage each
                      Last month I talked about               other to grow in the grace of giving as an essential
             Intentional Faith Development from the           practice of Christian discipleship, and as a
             “Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations”       congregation we need to practice generosity by our
             based on the book by Bishop Robert               extraordinary support for missions, connectional
Schnase.    His premise is that successful growing            ministries, and organizations that change people’s
churches (spiritually as well as in attendance and            lives. We need to give joyously, generously, and
finances) exhibit the five characteristics he calls:          consistently in ways that enrich the souls of our
Radical Hospitality, Passionate Worship, Intentional          members and strengthens the ministries of the church.
Faith Development, Risk-taking Mission & Service, and                    Jesus’ teachings abound with the tales of rich
Extravagant Generosity. This month I would like to            and poor, generous and shrewd, givers and takers,
address the Practice of Extravagant Generosity.               charitable and selfish, faithful and fearful. He
        “You will be enriched in every way for your           commends the poor widow putting her two coins in the
great generosity.” (2 Corinthians 9:11)                       treasury; giving out of her poverty, she “puts in all she
         Many of us grew up in faithful church going          had to live on” (Luke 21:1-4). The story upsets
families. We saw and then participated in the weekly          expectations by pointing to proportion rather than
offering. We may even have been encouraged to give            amount as the measure of extravagance.
a portion of our allowance to the church or Sunday                       The practice of generosity describes the
School. But then there are those of us who had no             Christian’s un-selfish willingness to give in order to
early church experience and are learning as we go.            make a positive difference for the purposes of Christ.
Whether we grew up in the church or not, most of us           Extravagant Generosity describes practices of sharing
give out of what’s left over rather than giving from the      and giving that exceed all expectations and extend to
best fruits. We need to give to God first. People talk        unexpected measures. It describes lavish sharing,
about putting God first and having God at the center of       sacrifice, and joyous giving of their members out of
their lives, but in actual practice most of us make           love for God and neighbor.
major decisions without seeking God’s will or priorities.                The practice of Extravagant Generosity is the
God becomes really peripheral instead of central.             fruit of maturation in Christ. The result of God’s
Instead of giving God the leftovers at the end of the         sanctifying grace that molds our hearts and changes
month, working proportionally toward tithing becomes          our values and behaviors. Extravagant Generosity
a spiritual discipline along our faith journey that puts      supports the other four practices, helping the church
God first. It’s a practical way of saying, “God really is     fulfill its ministry to make disciples of Jesus Christ in
Lord of our lives, and we do not give into society’s          robust and fruitful ways, opening the message of God’s
expectations, our possessions, or our appetites.”             love in Christ to more people now and for generations
Tithing (or working toward tithing) takes enormous            to come.
trust in God. Tithing strengthens faith.
         With minor variations, first-century Christian       Questions:
communities, the Methodists of the 1700’s. faith                  How do you feel about what our church
mentors, and models of Christian living today have all               teaches about money?         What values and
discovered the truth that generosity enlarges the soul,              themes guide our church’s efforts to
realigns priorities, connects people to the Body of                  encourage giving and tithing? How do you
Christ, and strengthens congregations to fulfill Christ’s            feel about how faithful our church is with its
ministries. Giving reflects the nature of God. Growing               money?
in the grace of giving is part of the Christian journey of        How has someone else’s generosity touched
faith, a response Christian disciples offer to God’s call            you and shaped your practices of giving? From
to make a difference in the world.                                   whom did you learn generosity?            Who
         People who give generously to the church do                 continues to influence you toward greater
so because they genuinely desire to make a positive                  generosity?
difference for the purposes of Christ and because they            What’s the most fun you’ve ever had giving
want to align their lives with higher purposes. The give             money? What made the experience delightful,
in response to the Spirit’s urging and feel a soul-                  memorable, and meaningful? How do you feel
sustaining satisfaction in the sense of meaning and                  about giving to the church’s ministry?
connection that comes with generosity. They give
because they love God, love the church, and desire to         Let me know what you think
grow in love of neighbor.                                     Peace and Blessings!
         Vibrant,    fruitful,  growing     congregations     Pastor Jim
practice the Practice of Extravagant Generosity. We
need to teach, preach, and practice proportional giving
Today's Prayer                                                        November 2 – No Shame, No Blame
Dear God, I commit my life afresh to you, to follow the                November 9 – A God-Focused Life
paths of righteousness. Please help me to live life                  November 16– Making the Connection
according to your will, your plan, your Word. Open the                 November 23 – Taking the Blame
doors you want to me to walk through, and close the                   November 30 – Restored by Grace
doors you do not want me to enter. I come to you
asking for guidance for this day, and every day to                 W. FARMINGTON UMC PRAYER
come. Thank you for hearing my prayer. In Jesus'
name. Amen.                                                                 MARKER
                                                              Special Needs:
                                                              Please remember our shut-ins: Dorothy Anthony,
                        UMW News                              Evelyn Brown, Barb Hurst, Marian Root (Windsor
                                                              House), Anna (Peg) Martin (Windsor House), Betty
                   There were eight members present
                                                              Stafford (Windsor House), Richard Petrik, (Cortland
         at the October 15th meeting; Barb Adams,
         Verona George, Joan Hickox, Carol Jean
         Goddard, Florence Satterlee, Dorothy Cleer,                 Our Friends in Need of Prayer:
Judy DeFabrizio, and                                                   Melanie Albrecht; Brittany Allison; Paula
Claudia York. Verona                                                   Applegate; Chris Applequist; Dale Bailey;
reported on the curtains.                                              Sharon Barnhart; Charles Bartholomew; Mary
The fabric is now in and                                      Beechy; Andrius Biliunas; Hannah Bontrager, Dawn
we hope to have them                                          Bright; Melody Bundy; Ed Button; Bill Byers; Ray
done by the end of                                            Chambers; Terri Chiarella; Ray Clark; Ed Cleer; Mikey
October.                                                      Cleer; Michelle Coakley; Colleen & Michael; Rita
         We held our                                          Covert; Mary Cross; Shirley Cross; Ray Cross; Lester
annual Fall Luncheon                                          Davis; Jack Daughtery; Braden Davenport; Hunter
with 84 ladies from area                                      Davis; Laura Dowen; Jack Frederick; Cory Freeman;
UMWs present. We all enjoyed a presentation of "This          Pastor Jim George; Kathy Granados; Dean Henry;
is My Story," by Colleen Aliberty. Everyone had a             Trisha Hientz; LeAnn Highfield; Evelyn Hill; Jordan
wonderful afternoon.                                          Hillard; Barb Hurst; Chris Huth; Hariette Ingram; Kathy
        Plans are being made for Mrs. Claus Closet to         Jackson; Lindsey, Jarvis; Jones Family; Robert
be held November 20th. Anyone willing to give a               Klembarsky; Bart Krontz; Largen Family; Edna Lauth;
demonstration please contact Judy DeFabrizio. All             Rachel Marks; Blanche Marcello; Bob Matthews;
donations to the silent auction are appreciated.              Eleanor McAninch; Morgan McCauley; Wendy Metcalf;
         All ladies of the Church are invited to come         Melissa Miller; Mollie Moore; Heather Newell; Justin
and join us for our meetings the second Wednesday of          Oliver; George Perich; Janet Reed; Jim Richards; Stub
each month at 10:30 in the social hall. We hope to see        Satterlee; Brian Sawyer; Myra Saylor; Beth Schlacht;
you next month.                                               Marilyn Schlacht; Lorrie Schwede; Carol Smith; Middy
                                                              Smith; John Spelich; Elise Sprong; John Stanley; Frank
                                                              Stout; Wilma Stremel; Sue Taylor; Jim VanDervort;
                                 Sunday                       Gary Watts; Chad Webb; Kathy Wireman, Paul William;
                                                              Jeremy, Kate, & Justin Woodworth; Bernie Woods;
                              School News                     -Those                   Serving
                            This month the children
have learned God was present with people during Bible         (Active)                 in the
times and well as now. They learned how God wants
us to be generous and patient, and how God has a
plan for each of our lives.                                   Mark Adams, Phil Babaduex, Josh Berg, Mychael
                                                              Bulford, Lindsey Romack Canete, Felix Canete Jr.,
               NOVEMBER CURRICULUM                            Gregory Clisby, Grant Crandall, Charles Cross, Alfonso
            Nov 2....................................Twins!   Estades, Ken Goddard, Josh Hall, Brian Hray, Philip
             Nov 9......Esau sells His Birthright             Lancaster, Andrew Lapchynski, Mark Mahon, Erik
            Nov 16.............. Jacob cheats Esau            McIntosh, Daniel Nellis Jr. John Pettit, Isaac Ralston,
            Nov 23............................Reunited!       Jim Richards Jr., Tammy Rodriguez, Bill Stewart, Kris
              Nov 30......Elizabeth & Zachariah               Stribling, Reed Sutliff, Tim Walker
        During this Thanksgiving season and each and
every day let us give thanks to God for all he has given            MARK YOUR CALENDAR
us. Here are some daily blessings.
             To God who give us daily bread,
                                                                           Coming Events
                                                                              November 1– Roast Beef Dinner 4-
                   a thankful song we raise.
                                                                              6:30– SEE SHARON TO SIGN UP
            We pray that God who gives us food
                                                                              November 2 – Communion Sunday &
            Will fill our hearts with praise. Amen
                                                                              Daylight Savings End
                                                                              November 3 –Administrative Board
                 We give you thanks, O Lord,
                                                                              Meeting 7:30 p.m.
                for all things bright and good,
                                                              November 4 – ELECTION DAY
                  The beauty of your world,
                                                              November 5 - Additional Alpha Night – 7.p.m.
               The bounty of your food. Amen
                                                                  November 9 – Birthdays & Anniversaries; 2nd
                                                              Sunday supports Bristol BAFA
   Adult Sunday
        "                                                     November 11 – VETERAN’S DAY
                                                              November 15 – Scrap with Denise 9:30-9:30 in the
School                                                        social hall. See Denise for more info or reservations.
        Classes meet each Sunday at 9:30 a.m. in the          November 16 – Carry In Dinner
Sunday School room. Each and every one is welcome             November 16 – Bristol Area Min. Assoc. (BAMA)
to attend. The lessons are very modern up to date info        Thanksgiving Service 6:30 p.m. Wildare UMC
on how people deal with their lives and relationships         November 20 – MRS. CLAUS’ CLOSET 6:30 PM
with God. We usually have a very lively discussion.           November 23 –Noisy Collection for BAFA & COURIER
                        Wise to Advise                        DEADLINE
November 27 – Thanksgiving                                 donation. Whatever you can do will be greatly
November 29 – Decorating the church for Advent             appreciated.
November 30 – First Sunday in Advent                                I’d also like to thank everyone for letting us
                                                           continue to have or meetings at the church. Our troop
Windsor House Nursing          Home     Ministry   every   is always looking for community service projects. If
Tuesday at 10:00am                                         anyone needs help or has any ideas, please give me a
                                                           call. Thank you. Starr Spangler 330-889-2109.
Tuesday evenings, 6:30 p.m., Alpha .Bible Study
6:30 – No Wednesday night Bible Study while we are         NOTICE:            Roast     Beef     1st
doing Alpha. Please join us on Tuesdays. Child care        Saturday of the month. If you can help
provided.                                                  in any way, from setting up, to serving,
                                                           to cleaning up or baking pies, please
Thursdays – Girl Scouts at Church 5:30-7:00 pm             see Sharon VanDervort. LAST ONE UNTIL NEXT
                                                           YEAR! LET’S HAVE A GOOD TURNOUT!
             Prayer List Updates                                        The Coffee Shoppe is open on Sundays
   Whenever you need prayer; we are there!
                                                                        at 9:30 a.m. Stop in for some coffee, good
   Whenever you need friends, know we care.
                                                                        conversation and snacks.
Hello All! Remember to help me with this column and
send me updates for the names on this list. As you                NOVEMBER BIRTHDAYS
know this list also goes to those who are out of town
or unable to attend church. The updates let those
                                                            Renee Stevens...........................Nov 5
know more about those names so that the prayers can
                                                             Madelynn McDowell...............Nov 12
become more specific. Contact me by email at
                                                            Alan Karr.................................Nov 17, By Phone at 330 889
                                                                   Elwyn Satterlee Sr...................Nov 17
2481 or 330 883 8685; By mail at 4949 Old State Road
                                                                   Leona Hipple..........................Nov 17
         Please keep all of the names on the prayer list
                                                                   Dakota Fussleman..................Nov 20
in your hearts and remember that we all have our
                                                                   Pam Monroe...........................Nov 22
silent prayers too.
                                                                   Rebecca Bontrager.................Nov 25
                 Tom Yesovich had surgery on his
                                                                  Anna Pleso...............................Nov 28
thyroid in October. Everything went well and he is
                                                                   Bob Bailey...............................Nov 28
slowly getting his voice back. He thanks everyone for
                                                                   Tori Amato..............................Nov 30
their prayers.

              Missionary News                                   NOVEMBER
             Keeping up with the Smiths:                      ANNIVERSARIES
The Smiths, Jason & Laura, are a couple with Crusade
for Christ in Italy. Joyce List receives updates from      Linda & Bruce Vogler............Nov 2
them and following is some of the news that Joyce          Mitty & Melvin Smith...............Nov 4
received: “I first met Simone over 6 years ago during      Beth & Joe Cleer......................Nov 8
the 1st year of his attending La Sapienza University. He   Wilma & Robert Satterlee......Nov 25
heard me speaking English with a student who was in
Rome for Spring Break. Last week as we were talking        We wish each of you a very happy and blessed
on campus he said to me, “Let’s study the Bible – the      birthday and anniversary. May God bless you and give
Old Testament. “ Simone is a very intelligent young        you many more.
man who understands many of the doctrines of
Christianity. Though he understands so much, he is
unwilling to put his faith in Christ. My prayer from him
                                                                              THANK YOU
is that as we spend time studying God’s word that God               From Shirley Cross: Shirley would like to
will touch his heart.       Simone’s plan is to teach      thank her church family for all the cards and prayers. A
philosophy in a high school or college. I really believe   special thanks to Pastor Jim who was there during her
that God could use him to influence students for His       procedures.
Kingdom. I also really believe that God has divinely
brought about this year of Simone consistently being             Get Well Wishes to:
at the university so that we can study the Scriptures               Pastor Jim who is recovering
together. Pray that God will use our time together to      from rotator cuff surgery. If you haven’t
touch Simone’s life.                                       seen him lately, he has a new “best
                                                           friend” under his arm. This devise is
                                                           supporting his arm as he recovers from
                GIRL SCOUT NEWS                                     Middy Smith who is recovering
          Hello everyone. The girl scouts had a campout    from surgery.
last month at Camp Sugarbush. We had lots of fun
cooking all our meals outdoors over the open fire. We
were very fortunate that God gave us such a beautiful                            POINSETTIA SALE
weekend.                                                                         It’s time once again to order
         The troop will be collecting for Operation                      your Poinsettia’s for the Christmas
Christmas Child this month. The collection week is                       season. Orders must be in by Saturday,
November 17-24. This project was started by Franklin       November 22nd. As of this printing the prices have yet
Graham though the Samaritan’s Purse. We feel that          to be determined. For further information you can call
this is a very good organization and our troop has sent    Carol Jean Goddard – 330-889-0022 or Pastor Jim –
the shoe box gifts for the last few years. There will be   330-889-3345. You can send a check to: West
information on the desk downstairs. There will be a        Farmington United Methodist Church, % Carol
box downstairs if you would like to make a donation of     Goddard, 6727 Girdle Road, West Farmington, OH
a small item, pack your own shoebox, or a monetary         44491. You can also place your order along with cash
                                                           or check in the collection plate on any Sunday. Please
mark the envelope “Poinsettias”. Your name, how
many flowers, in memory of or in honor of are needed.

                                                           Law of God or Gift of God? (Part I) By David S. Bell
     ITEMS OF INTEREST:                                               Recently, tithing has become of topic of great
         National Diabetes Month: A time to                discussion within the church community and even
communicate the seriousness of diabetes and the            outside the immediate church community. Some
importance of proper diabetes control. This year, ADM      congregations set the expectation of giving at the
focuses on the deadly complications of diabetes and        traditional tithing mark (ten percent of an individual's
asks the American public "Why should you care about        income); while other congregations rarely, if ever, deal
diabetes?" Throughout the month, the American              with this predominantly Old Testament concept. In
Diabetes Association leverages opportunities both          reality, giving in United Methodist congregations, as
nationally and locally to raise awareness about            well as other mainline Protestant congregations, is far
diabetes and its serious complications such as heart       less than ten percent of people's income. According to
disease, stroke, kidney disease, blindness and             studies by Empty Tomb, Inc., average giving by church
amputations.                                               members is less than 2.5 percent of members' annual
         Election Day: The United States presidential      income. A November 23, 2007, Wall Street Journal
election of 2008, scheduled for Tuesday November           article titled "The Backlash Against Tithing" notes
4, 2008, will be the 56th consecutivUnited States          congregants' reluctance to tithe.
presidential election and will select the President and               As Christians, we are called to give to God
the Vice President of the United States.                   "what is right, not what is left," as the popular quote
         National Forget Me Not Day – November             from a church marquee states. God calls us to offer
10 is a day to remember family, friends, and loved         our "first fruits," not the "leftovers." First fruits giving
ones. People use this day to get in touch with family,     requires the theological premise that our possessions
friends and loved ones, especially those who we            and assets ultimately belong to God. All that we have
haven't seen in a while. You don't want them to forget     in life is a gift from God! Faith-filled, first fruits giving is
you, do you!?                                              our opportunity to return to God a small portion of
         Veterans Day, honors ALL American                 God's abundant blessing in our lives. Moreover, these
veterans, both living and dead. In fact, Veterans Day is   blessings are not limited to financial assets or
largely intended to thank LIVING veterans for              possessions. Most of us can examine our own lives and
dedicated and loyal service to their country.              find numerous blessings, perhaps even some
November 11 of each year is the day that we ensure         astounding miracles.
veterans know that we deeply appreciate the sacrifices                Tithing becomes a benchmark for the modern-
they have made in the lives to keep our country free.      day Christian. Since few regular worship attenders
         The 12th annual Mrs. Claus’ Closet to be          have achieved the giving mark of tithing, how might
held on November 20th, starting at 6:30 p.m. There is      pastors and church leaders encourage congregants to
a $3.00 admission charge which includes, fun,              strive to tithe? If pastors and church leaders promote
fellowship, a silent auction and as always – good          proportionate giving, worshipers will be called to
food! Any donations are welcome. Please plan to            examine their current giving levels and will be
attend and bring a friend.                                 challenged to move closer to the tithe.
         National Bible Week: is set for Sunday,                      Why is tithing a benchmark rather than a goal?
November 23rd through Sunday, November 30.                 In his sermon, "The Use of Money," John Wesley
National Bible Association’s signature event is            preached about "earning all you can, saving all you
celebrated the week of Thanksgiving every year since       can, and giving all you can." For Wesley, the tithe was
1941. Governors and Mayors from across the country         not the ultimate goal of the Christian; it was the
proclaim National Bible Week in their states and towns.    standard, the normative mark, the common
Congressional co-chairs from the House and Senate          denominator. Jesus' teaching and example urge us to
enter National Bible Week statements into the              examine our choices with all our possessions and
Congressional Record, and every US President since         assets, not just ten percent of them. Frankly, Jesus
Franklin D. Roosevelt has issued a National Bible Week     asked his disciples for one hundred percent
Message                                                    commitment. In Holy Smoke: Whatever Happened to
                                                           Tithing, authors J. Clif Christopher and Herb Mather
                                                           write: "God provided the tithe as a benchmark, to help
                                                           us put God first in our lives . . . to help us put all else
                                                           in proper perspective."
                                                           Written by David S. Bell, former Director of Stewardship with
                                                           GOD. He currently serves as Vice President of Stewardship
                                                           with The United Methodist Foundation of Michigan.

                                                                   Thanksgiving is a Time to Remember

                                                           Thanksgiving is a moment to remember
                                                           How little we can do to move the stars.
                                                           All we are and have we must surrender,
                                                           Nor is Earth less inscrutable than Mars.
                                                           Knowing this, we know the need for friends
                                                           Sharing both our pleasures and our pain,
                                                           Giving, though it may not serve their ends,
                                                           In joy the love that will our love sustain.
                                                           Very much like water in a lake,
                                                           In sum we serve as mirrors to the sky.
No one alone can heaven's picture take.
Given friends, we know the reason why.

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